Unusual anatomical variations of the hepatic arteries and bile ducts: What are the surgical implications

  • Nathalie Umugwaneza
  • Fidele Byiringiro
  • Paul Ndahimana
  • Andrew Ivang
  • Martin Nyundo
  • Faustin Ntirenganya
  • Julien Gashegu
Keywords: (MeSH terms); Hepatic artery; Bile duct; variation; Surgical implication.


Introduction: The knowledge of anatomy is essential for surgical safety and impacts positively on patients’ outcomes. Surgeons operating on the liver and bile ducts should keep in mind the normal anatomy and its variations as the latter are common.

Case Presentation: We conducted a structured surgical dissection course of the supra-colic compartment of the abdominal cavity on 2nd and 3rd October 2020. While dissecting a 46years-old male cadaver, we encountered unusual anatomical variations of the hepatic arterial branching, the biliary tree, and arterial supply to the common bile duct. The common hepatic artery was dividing into two branches: a common short trunk for the left hepatic artery and the right gastric artery (hepato-gastric trunk) and a common trunk for the right hepatic artery and gastroduodenal artery (hepato-gastroduodenal trunk). The right hepatic
duct was duplicated with a main right hepatic duct and an additional smaller duct. The bile duct was supplied by an artery coming from the abdominal aorta.

Conclusion: We described three unusual anatomical variations: a variation of the hepatic arteries branching pattern, an aberrant right hepatic duct, and blood supply to the bile duct from the abdominal aorta. Surgeons should be aware of these rare variations.

Keywords: (MeSH terms); Hepatic artery; Bile duct; variation; Surgical implication.


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1729-0503
print ISSN: 1680-6905